CHINA OPEN 2012
'Disappointed' Tsonga Reaches Beijing Semi-finals
by ATP Staff|
World No. 7 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga was “disappointed” with his performance, but reached the China Open semi-finals on Friday in Beijing with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Russia’s Mikhail Youzhny. The Frenchman converted three of his five break points and won 77 per cent of points behind his first serve to claim victory in 69 minutes.
"I'm a bit disappointed with my game on the baseline; I didn't play really good tennis," admitted Tsonga. "Today it was not brilliant, but was solid enough to win it today. I served well and that's it."
The 27-year-old Tsonga is through to the semi-finals for the second year in a row at this ATP World Tour 500 hard-court tournament; he fell to Berdych last year. The right-hander improved to a 47-17 match record on the season and is bidding to win his third ATP World Tour title following victories in Doha (d. Monfils) and two weeks ago in Metz (d. Seppi).
Victory for Tsonga added a further 90 points to the Frenchman’s total in the South African Airways ATP Rankings Race To London. Last year’s runner-up at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals is currently in eighth position.
World No. 29 Florian Mayer celebrated his 29th birthday as he defeated Chinese wild card Ze Zhang 6-3, 6-4. The German saved 10 of the 11 break points he faced and broke Zhang three times for victory in 84 minutes.
The 22-year-old Zhang was the first Chinese player to contest an ATP World Tour quarter-final since Bing Pan in 1995, having stunned fifth seed Richard Gasquet a day earlier. "Mayer has a lot of change in the slice of ball, which really destroyed my rhythm," said Zhang. "I couldn't work out an effective strategy to fight against him."
Mayer is through to his first ATP World Tour semi-final since capturing the BRD Nastase Tiriac Trophy in Bucharest (d. Andujar) in September 2011. The right-hander has a 22-22 match record this season, highlighted by a quarter-final showing at Wimbledon (l. to Djokovic) .